Family & Education

Proud to be a typical Jewish dad

I'm forging my own personal parental stereotype - just ask my kids


Most people have a very defined view of what a Jewish mother looks like – that person is Maureen Lipman. The iconic 1980s advert would not have worked if Beattie had been male, because for years we Jewish dads have been a group in search of a stereotype.

Now a new Facebook group, Your Jewish Dad Talk, is trying to put that right by inviting people to post what their Jewish dad would say. And the interesting thing is that, despite everyone’s best efforts, no real single stereotype is emerging. It’s almost like everyone’s Jewish dads are actually individuals.

I may be a stereotype of one but here is what I think my children, Lucy and Alex, would say about me if I asked them (which I’m not going to do for obvious reasons). They would say that my chicken soup is OK but my pizza is better. They would talk disparagingly about my “dad jokes” – the way they describe all my attempts at humour. Despite being the two most absent-minded children you could imagine, they would be scathing about my habit of forgetting at least one important possession every time we get into the car.

They would complain about my attempts to get them to do something – anything – outdoors. My teenage daughter would moan about my annoying habit of removing her phone and laptop every single schoolnight – before it’s even midnight.

They would kvetch about my reluctance to spend hours of my evening watching hilarious YouTube videos when there is football on TV. And they would definitely comment on the fact that I treat them practically as slaves by forcing them not to leave shoes and clothes strewn on the floor and very occasionally asking them to put a plate in the dishwasher.

On the plus side I have a well-deserved reputation for “dabbing” on demand and the live streams of my silly dances have provided much fun for my daughter’s friends on her group chat, not to mention the photo opportunities I provide while schluffing.

It might not amount to much of a stereotype but I reckon that makes me a pretty typical Jewish dad.

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